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okPORK PAGES official magazine of the Oklahoma Pork Council |

Volume 21 | Issue1 | Spring 2017

Dr. Scott Carter:

Contents Spring 2017

3 | President Speaks

4 | Executive Review 6 | 2016: Year In Review 12 | Dr. Scott Carter: Distinguished Service Award Winner

15 | Q&A with Steve Meyer 16 | Ambassador Award Winners Merle & Barbara Swineford Blue & Gold Sausage

20 | Thank You Ms. Donna! 24 | New Talent at okPORK 25 | A Courteous Donation 26 | HANOR Moves Headquarters to Enid

On the Cover

Dr. Scott Carter shares his knowledge with youth to help educate the next generation.

Photo by Lindsay Tasos 2|

okPORK PAGES Spring 2017 | Volume 21 | Issue 1 BOARD OF DIRECTORS OFFICERS President | Cathy Vaughan, Rosston President Elect | Phil Oliphant, El Reno Vice President | Joe Popplewell, Stillwater Treasurer | Sara Linneen, Holdenville BOARD MEMBERS Keith Reiner, Enid Paris Robinson, Holdenville Tina Falcon, Tecumseh Robbie Woods, Enid EX OFFICIO Dr. Scott Carter, Stillwater Brett Ramsey, Jones Rob Richard, Oklahoma City STAFF Executive Director Roy Lee Lindsey, Jr. | Office Manager Donna Jackson | Office Manager Christine Ayala-Sanchez | Director of Marketing and Promotions Nikki Snider | Communications Specialist Lindsay Tasos | Event and Outreach Specialist Lloyd Hawkins | OKLAHOMA PORK COUNCIL 901 North Lincoln Blvd., Suite 380 Oklahoma City, OK 73104-3206 Phone 405.232.3781 • Fax 405.232.3862 Toll free in Okla. • 888.SAY.PORK WEBSITE | okPORK PAGES is the official publication of the Oklahoma Pork Council and is published four times per year in March, June, September and December by the Oklahoma Pork Council. Programs are made available to pork producers without regard to race, color, sex, religion or national origin. The Oklahoma Pork Council is an equal opportunity employer. All Pork Pages inquiries should be directed to the okPORK office or Writing and Design | Lindsay Tasos, Nikki Snider Editing | Donna Jackson, Christine Sanchez


See you at Pork Congress!


by Cathy Vaughan

I believe this is my final letter to you as President of Oklahoma Pork Council. In February we will hold our annual Pork Congress and new officers will take their places on our board. We hope that you will be able to join us this year at the Embassy Suites in Norman on February 24th. I’m excited about the programs scheduled for Pork Congress this year. Our keynote from Steve Meyer will be informative and interesting in light of the current economics of the pork industry. I know Steve will have lots of info about what we can expect for the rest 2017. During lunch, U.S. Representative Frank Lucas will be there to address current issues in Washington D.C. The appointment of Scott Pruitt to head the EPA and Sonny Perdue to head USDA are definite wins for our industry. I believe with the new administration many changes are ahead for our industry and I hope they are all in our favor. Representative Lucas will have the latest on these and other developments of the new administration and what they mean to Oklahoma Agriculture. Another session of Pork Congress will feature a panel

of Oklahoma 4-H and FFA students. okPORK has a long history of supporting these organizations through grants, scholarships, premium auctions and the Youth Leadership Camp. I’m excited to hear from these students about specific ways our support has helped them. I hope that 2017 will bring agriculture in our state and our country some wins with some of the new presidential appointments. I have enjoyed working as the president of okPORK this year. Thank you for what you do for our industry and keep sharing your story! I wish I could write more, but we are still dealing with power-outages at work and home after the January ice storm so things are a crazy right now. I look forward to catching up with all of you in February. I wish you all the best of success in 2017. •



Changes Are Coming


by Roy Lee Lindsey

Anyone who’s been working in or watching the pork industry over the last 30 years knows the only real constant has been change. From moving hogs indoors, to three site production, to wean-to-finish barns, to group housing, to onfarm animal welfare assessments, to feeds and diets, to use of antibiotics, the only real constant has been change. Some changes we’ve welcomed readily and others we’ve reluctantly adopted. But we have been changing – striving for continuous improvement in everything we do. For the past 18 years, I’ve spent my time at okPORK trying everything I knew to do to improve the services we provide to our industry. Sometimes we’ve been successful and others, not so much. But I think you’ll agree that we’ve kept trying. As we start 2017, we are faced with even more changes at okPORK, in our industry, and in our country with the election of a new President and a new party in control of both the White House and Congress. Here’s a look at some of those changes and opportunities that await okPORK and our industry. Outgoing Staff at okPORK – Late last year, okPORK Office Manager Donna Jackson told me she was ready to retire after 18 years with okPORK. Her announcement is bittersweet for me personally and for okPORK. Donna was the first person I hired after joining okPORK. She started here 30 days after I did so she’s really been with me my entire career at okPORK. She’s provided outstanding service to okPORK and our members. She’s been here when our funding was questioned after USDA Secretary Glickman ordered the termination of the Pork Checkoff in 2001. She’s seen members of the board of directors come and go. She’s been a confidant to me in the office. And she’s been the ultimate professional, the consummate representative of okPORK in everything she’s done for the last 18 years. She’s announced she will be retiring in March 2017. We’ve dedicated a much more in-depth look at Donna and her contributions to okPORK on page 20 of this issue of okPORK Pages, but I would be remiss if I didn’t take just a moment to say again how much she has meant to okPORK and to me personally. We know she’s looking forward to enjoying her travels and we know we will miss her. Incoming Staff at okPORK – I spent a few minutes a week ago trying to count how many different faces have come through okPORK in my 18 years and I finally gave up when I ran out of fingers and toes. The start of 2017 brings us some more new


faces and one very familiar face back to our team. Nikki Snider has rejoined okPORK as our director of marketing and promotions. Nikki has been with us off and on in some capacity since 2003. She has handled marketing and communications for us in the past and I’m very excited to have her back as a member of our team. Being able to bring Nikki back to the fold allowed okPORK to end our relationship with our PR firm and to bring all our marketing and promotional efforts back in-house. This also saved us money and gives us greater control of our marketing efforts. Lindsay Tasos interned with us last summer and now has joined our team as our communications specialist. Lindsay will be responsible for our communications and media outreach. One thing we learned during our efforts on SQ777, we need to greatly increase our interaction with the public and the media and I am confidant Lindsay can help us make that happen. Christine Sanchez has joined our team as the new office manager. She will be working with Donna until Donna retires in March. Christine has a wealth of experience and gets the benefit of 90 days working with Donna. I am certain there are areas we can streamline operations and improve our use of time. Christine’s previous experience will help us identify areas and make those changes. Back to the Basics - In the last issue of okPORK PAGES I told you okPORK was going back to our focus of putting a face on our industry and telling the story of putting pork chops and bacon on the public’s plates. As we continue to meet as a team, this is the constant theme. I know Oklahoma’s hog farmers are proud of what they do every day to feed Oklahoma and the world. Our job at okPORK is to help farmers show that pride. New Faces at the Capitol – With the 2016 election behind us, we not only have a new administration in Washington, DC,

Continued on page 18


Friday, October 27, 2017

John Conrad Golf Course







Friday, February 24, 2017 Embassy Suites Hotel & Conference Center 2501 Conference Dr, Norman, OK 73069

Tentative Agenda 9 a.m.


10 a.m.

NPB Update, CEO Bill Even

10:45 a.m.

NPPC Update, Bill Davis

11:30 a.m.

okPORK’s Investment in Oklahoma’s Youth


Lunch and update from U.S. Representative Frank Lucas

1:30 p.m.

okPORK Update from Roy Lee Lindsey, Executive Director

2:15 p.m.

Legislative Update, James McSpadden

3 p.m.

Annual Meeting

4 p.m.

Keynote Address - Economic Update, Steve Meyer

5 p.m.


6 p.m.

Awards Banquet and Auction

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Auction Items Needed! Calling all those with a dab hand for shopping! okPORK plans to hold the annual silent and live auctions during the 2017 Oklahoma Pork Congress. The auctions raise non-Checkoff funds for okPORK. The funds help us support legislators and fund activities that are outside the Pork Checkoff scope of work. The more money raised during the auctions – the more impact okPORK can have in our community! Donations are needed of all kinds! Some ideas of past donations are: • Hunting trips and supplies • OSU and OU memorabilia or tickets • Tickets to other local events • Restaurant gift cards • Home décor and crafts • Farm Supplies • Anything “pig” related • Jewelry In our continued effort to improve the auction, we would like to hear from YOU! We want to know what items you would be interested in purchasing. If you have items to donate or a suggestion of an item that would sell well, contact Roy Lee Lindsey, or 405-232-3781. •

Public Notice by Oklahoma Pork Council And the National Pork Board The election of pork producer delegate candidates for the 2018 National Pork Producers (Pork Act) Delegate Body will take place at 3 p.m. on Friday, February 24, 2017 in conjunction with the Oklahoma Pork Congress and Annual Meeting which will be held at the Embassy Suites Norman Hotel & Conference Center in Norman, Okla. All Oklahoma pork producers are invited to attend. Any producer age 18 or older who is a resident of Oklahoma

and has paid all assessments due may be considered as a delegate candidate and/or participate in the election. All eligible producers are encouraged to bring with them a sales receipt proving that hogs were sold in their name and the checkoff deducted. Nominations will be accepted from the floor. For more information, contact the Oklahoma Pork Council. Telephone: 888-SAY-PORK (729-7675) or 405-232-3781. •

New okPORK Board Member Needed At the okPORK Annual Meeting, the membership of okPORK will elect three members to the okPORK Board of Directors. The east district seat that is open is held by Tina Falcon. Falcon is not eligible for reelection. The open at-large seat is held by Phil Oliphant who is eligible for reelection. The open west district seat is held by Cathy Vaughan and she is eligible for reelection. The west district is composed of counties west of I-35 and includes those counties which contain I-35. The east district

includes all counties east of I-35. Any paid okPORK member in Oklahoma can run for and vote for the at-large board seat. If you are interested in running for the Board of Directors please submit a photo and bio to okPORK by February 1st. We will publish your bio for the Pork Congress participants to review before the election. We will also take nominations from the floor during the meeting and candidates will have the opportunity to address the okPORK membership prior to the election. • | 11

Dr. Scott Carter receives Distinguished Service Award by Lindsay Tasos


t is Tuesday afternoon at Oklahoma State University and students are quickly filling up the classroom in the Animal Science building. Dr. Scott Carter always starts his Swine Science class off by asking one certain question, “What time is it?” and the students eagerly respond, “It’s swine time!” Dr. Scott Carter may come off as a shy and independent person but once you get him started on the swine industry that quiet first impression quickly disappears and if you were an OSU Animal Science student you learned this on day one.

Oklahoma Born and Raised Carter said he is a product of the swine industry in Oklahoma. He grew up in Ninnekah Okla., where his father was a swine producer, board member and ag teacher. Once he graduated high school in 1985, he wanted nothing more than to pursue a degree at Oklahoma State University in the hopes of becoming a veterinarian. “I was able to get a job at the OSU swine barn under Kim Brock, for the next four years,” Carter said. “After seeing the work that Dr. Charlie Maxwell did, it gave me a passion for research. I then remember him telling me that I was no longer going to vet school and that I was going to graduate school, so I said okay.” After completing graduate school at the University of Kentucky in 1995, Carter became the Swine Extension Specialist at North Dakota State University for two years and when Dr. Maxwell retired at OSU, Carter returned to his alma mater with a teaching and research position. However, Carter said it wasn’t just his father and Dr. Maxwell who influenced him to be an advocate for the swine industry. Past Oklahoma Pork Council Hall of Fame Inductees and Distinguished Service Award Winners – Bill Luce, Kim Brock, Butch Young and Rick Maloney – were just some of the people who motivated him. “They influenced and encouraged me to continue with a career in the swine industry,” he said. “So, when I came back to teach that’s what I wanted to do for the students.”

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Research Carter’s work extends beyond the classroom and when he is not in his office advising graduate students he is out at the OSU swine research facility. “Dr. Carter serves several roles and wears many hats in the swine industry, said Dr. Clint Rusk, Oklahoma State University Animal Science Department Head. “At OSU, he’s a primary swine research faculty member and a teacher in the Animal Science Department. “Dr. Carter does a lot behind the scenes when he is out at the swine farm, John Staude, OSU Swine Herd Manager said. “He’s always out physically working with the students and there aren’t very many professors that do that. He doesn’t just give them the answers either, he makes them work and learn.” Staude said Dr. Carter was one of his professors while he was a student at OSU and he learned and gained a great deal of information has shaped him into the leader that he is today. “I have always wanted to influence the next generation just like he does,” he said. “Since having him as a professor I have used Dr. Carter’s ways of teaching when I educate my own students by making them actually work to learn.” OSU has recently gone through some changes to their swine research program that required them to split the farm up into a research and seedstock program and Carter was a key role into the transition of the program. “We brought in commercial hogs and added them to our program to do research on,” Staude said. “With biosecurity being the main concern with the transition, Dr. Carter and his grad students took over the research and I stayed and maintained the seedstock herd.” Roy Lee Lindsey, okPORK Executive Director, said Dr. Carter has shaped the OSU swine unit into one of the top research facilities in the United States and that was a key reason why he wanted him on the Oklahoma Pork Council Board of Directors. “We needed someone who had that connection to OSU Animal Science, particularly in the swine field,” Lindsey said. “We needed to capture the value of the facility and students that

are coming out of that program and having Scott be a part of our board is a tremendous part of why we are successful.” Carter’s strong understanding of swine research is what makes him a crucial part of the Oklahoma Pork Council. “Dr. Carter may come off a little shy and quiet, but when he does speak up, people do really listen to what he has to say,” Lindsey said. “He’s done a great job bridging together the university and commercial production.”

Educating Today’s Youth At OSU, Carter teaches principals of animal nutrition and swine science. In addition to that he is also the graduate coordinator in the Animal Science department. “He’s just an outstanding individual in our department,” Rusk said. “He has that calm, easy going nature and the students just love him as a teacher both in the classroom and on the research side. He loves to see those students reach their maximum potential.” Rusk said Carter truly cares about his students and treats them like actual people. He doesn’t just see teaching as a paycheck, he sees it as a vocation. “OSU’s undergrad population comes from a total of 41 states,” Rusk said. “Dr. Carter’s reputation and what he brings to our department from the swine side is very important. Our swine unit is one of the best in the country and Dr. Carter helps the students who want to be a part of research in the facility.” However, Carter also has a connection with students outside of OSU at okPORK’s Youth Leadership Camp every summer. “When we started the initial planning of Youth Leadership camp we knew we wanted to have someone from campus,” Lindsey said. “We thought Dr. Carter would be a great fit.” Lindsey wondered how Carter would fit in with high school kids after being a college professor so long, but after seeing him interact with the kids he quickly changed his mind. “We were processing hogs at the Food and Agricultural Process Center and he had his small group and I distinctly remember him almost crawling into the carcass to show those | 13

students something that they needed to know,” Lindsey said. “He made them work through that entire process and his engagement and enthusiasm through all the camps we have amazed me.” His knowledge through Youth Leadership Camp has led camp alumni to find internships, make college major decisions, get involved with research and find jobs in the swine industry. Carter has inspired many inside and outside the classroom, both in college and in high school by sharing his knowledge and his stories about the swine industry. His engagement with students and people in general is like none other. “His involvement with students may not be something that you see from afar,” Lindsey said. “But regardless, everyone walks away with more respect towards the industry.” Staude also thinks that students and people in general benefit from Carter’s wise words. “I’m sure there are many students that come out of his programs at OSU and say that’s the best class that they have ever taken,” Staude said. “That’s just because he makes it fun and educational at the same time. They are absorbing and learning from his teachings and that is all that really matters.”

Beyond the University One of Carter’s projects outside of OSU included being a part of the development of the National Swine Nutrition Guide which has proved to be successful, not only for the animal science department, but college students and producers nationwide. “It was a nationwide effort and a new book had not been 14 |

published since 1998,” Carter said. “They wanted a resource that was user and producer friendly, so that’s what we gave them. After 18 months of working on the nutrition guide in Des Moines, Iowa, the group of researchers and nutritionist, including Carter, finished up the text. “We wanted to compare old books with today’s industry to see how things have changed,” Carter said. “It was a tremendous professional development experience being able to sit in that room and help create the guide.” The Oklahoma Pork Council is honored to present Dr. Carter with the 2017 Distinguished Service Award thanks to his love and passion for not only the swine industry, but the people who help make it one of the best. “When Roy Lee came into my classroom after my ‘swine time’ introduction he said he had a big announcement to make,” Carter said. “I was shocked that I was receiving such an honorable award and it means more than I can express that the board and industry can think of me that way.” •


Keynote Speaker

Q&A with Steve Meyer Pork industry economics have been quite a conundrum over the past 18 months. During his keynote address at Oklahoma Pork Congress, Steve Meyer, vice president of analytics, pork for Express Markets, Inc., will update you on the latest data and what to expect moving forward. We’ll wait until the meeting to talk economics, but thought it would be fun to catch up with Steve and see what he’s been up to lately and help you learn a little bit more about this well-known pork industry figure. How did you get connected to the pork industry? My first connection to pigs was showing through 4-H and FFA. My family raised purebred Chester Whites, for many years. I showed them mainly at county and national shows. But that got me started and I was the state and regional FFA swine proficiency winner. I continued raising pigs through graduate school and then went to work at NPPC in 1993. So, we know you sold Paragon Economics recently. Tell us what’s going on with your business endeavors these days? How is your role at EMI Analytics different than the work you did through Paragon Economics? At Paragon, NPPC and NPB were two of my biggest clients. It was general economic analysis advising that I practiced with Len Steiner. We looked mainly at the pork market and then began analyzing the grain markets once the Renewable Fuel Standard kicked in. EMI approached me in 2014. They were big on the poultry market and wanted to move into analyzing the hog market. They wanted to work with me, so they negotiated to buy my business and I came on staff with them. It was a good time and opportunity to cash out my business. I still do the same market analysis for EMI (they are a part of Agri Stats, Inc.) and work closely with NPB and NPPC. It’s been a good marriage so far. What does a day in your life look like? I stare at a lot of spreadsheets and take a lot of phone calls. Travel takes a third of my time which is great because I love to see folks across the country. I do a lot of managing client

relationships. And mostly work hard to keep models and predictions up to date. What part of your job consistently makes you the happiest? I like to do things that help people run their business better. I love it when I find out that our info helped someone make a business decision that was positive. I enjoy the people and have gotten to know many over the years. What’s one thing you wish the public knew about the pork industry (not related to the economics)? That not all decisions are made simply because it’s profitable. We make decisions about how to treat animals because it’s the best way to treat the animal. The animals in our modern farms are well treated and are taken care of very well. How do you spend your free time? Our youngest just graduated college so we’re learning how to be empty nesters. We moved back to Stillwater to be closer to my parents so I enjoy spending time with them. We are also working to build a house so I spend time dreaming up plans. What do you like to listen to on a long car ride? Classic Country. Willie’s Roadhouse is my favorite. What is your favorite part of the pig to eat, and how do you like it cooked? Good, smoked barbecue ribs. What’s your favorite thing about living in Stillwater? Being closer to family. We like the place we bought outside of town. We are having fun investing in these 50 acres and making it ours. And I love being close enough to keep up with the OSU Cowboys. • | 15


erle and Barbara Swineford of Laverne, Okla., have been selected to receive the 2017 Ambassador Award for their willingness to champion an industry that would benefit their community when it needed an economic boost. Swineford came to Laverne in 1953 at a time many people were leaving that area. There was a lesser known, but not insignificant, second dust bowl going on at the time. Swineford’s business was in auto repair and the sandstorms of this second dust bowl did a lot of damage to automobiles. This unfortunate event brought him lots of customers and allowed him to build the successful business that he still runs today. As a businessman, Swineford quickly realized that being involved in his community and exploring ways to keep it vibrant would be necessary. So, he found many ways over the years to be a champion for the city of Laverne and the whole of Northwest Oklahoma. Swineford worked with the Red Carpet Country division of the Oklahoma Tourism Department to promote tourism and industry in northwest Oklahoma. He ran their State Fair Booth for 12 years in the 1970s. This involvement lead him to the role of business manager for the Bicentennial Wagon Train in 1976. The wagon train wound its way through the 48 states to commemorate America’s 200th birthday. Oklahoma’s wagon launched out of Oklahoma City with several residents of Laverne on board and stayed with the train until it ended in Philadelphia on July 4th, 1976. The wagon train became more than just an opportunity for Swineford to celebrate Oklahoma and America – it changed the course of his life when he met Barbara, his wife, on the stop in Tennessee. Barbara joined Merle in Laverne and they became politically active in the campaign of George Nigh for Oklahoma Governor. After he was elected governor, Nigh appointed Merle to the Oklahoma Transportation Commission and Barbara to the Oklahoma Film Commission. During his tenure on the Oklahoma Transportation Commission, Swineford promoted building Highway 3 that would connect Oklahoma’s Panhandle with the rest of the state, and is known as Governor George Nigh’s Northwest Passage. Around this time oil and gas production came to a screeching halt and the gas plant in Laverne closed. The townspeople were looking for a new economic stalwart. Swineford joined Communities in Economic Transition, an effort by the Cooperative Extension Service across the U.S. to bring

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together communities that needed an economic boost and were actively seeking new industries. Around this same time other folks on the Laverne economic committee heard that the Murphy Family was looking to expand their pork operations. The Murphy Family was on a flight and decided to make an unscheduled stop and check out Laverne. That interaction lead to an invitation for Laverne residents to tour the Murphy farms in Missouri. Murphy was expecting four or five people and it turned out that 35 Laverne residents, with Merle and Barbara at the helm, traveled to Missouri and learned what modern hog production was all about. One more event would seal the deal between the community of Laverne and the Murphy family. The town held an open house – which was more like a small-town festival – and a chance for landowners, business owners, and residents to talk to the Murphy family and vice versa. Of course, there were some families not excited about the prospects of pork production coming into the area. But in the end, Laverne was the next stop for Murphy. “I remember the Murphys and their representatives saying ‘These are real people,’ Merle said. “Of course, I wasn’t surprised because we didn’t get all dressed up and put on a show. We just showed them who we are.” And after more than 20 years in production and new ownership, the community has benefited from having Murphy, now Smithfield, in their backyard. They employ 200 people and their tax base supports Laverne schools which has 500 students and the largest land area of any district in the state. Laverne still has a grocery store when many towns, including the county seat, do not and there’s a Dollar General store coming soon. “If not for the Murphy Family putting their production in this area, Laverne would not be here today,” Merle said.


f you’ve lived in Oklahoma for any length of time, you’ve likely consumed a fair amount of Blue & Gold Sausage. If you participated in FFA in Oklahoma, you’ve likely sold a fair amount of Blue & Gold Sausage. As an active member of okPORK, you’ve likely had the opportunity to meet members of the Ramsey family who own and operate Blue & Gold Sausage. Don Ramsey started the company in the 1960’s. As an ag teacher, Ramsey knew the challenge of raising funds to support yearly FFA activities. The early fund raising projects were confined to making sausage from hogs in Ramsey’s show program and word quickly spread. By 1970 Ramsey had opened a processing facility in Jones, Okla., and began serving FFA chapters across the state. In time, Ramsey’s sons Brett and Greg joined the business. Today, participating groups raise $5 million annually through the sales of sausage, chicken, and bacon in support of their worthwhile projects. In addition to providing fundraising opportunities for students, the Ramsey family has always actively supported swine shows at the local, county and state level. You’ll always find Brett Ramsey helping in the swine showring during the Oklahoma Youth Expo and see their name on the buyer list at the OYE premium sale. In additional support for youth livestock shows, Don, Greg and Brett Ramsey have given many years of service to the Sirloin Club. They have been devoted members, served on committees

and Brett is the immediate past president of the Sirloin Club. In recognition of his commitment to Oklahoma FFA students, okPORK inducted Don Ramsey into the Hall of Fame in 2006. Brett Ramsey joined the okPORK board of directors as an ex-officio member in 2004 and still serves in that capacity today. “We occupy a small part of the ag world, we needed a place to fit in with production ag on a visible state level,” Ramsey said. “Our involvement with okPORK helps us bridge the gap between the show pig community that we serve regularly and large-scale production agriculture.” The expertise Ramsey brings to the board has benefited okPORK as well. “Brett has been a stabilizing force on the board and his institutional knowledge of okPORK over the past 12 years is invaluable,” said Roy Lee Lindsey okPORK executive director. “I truly appreciate Brett’s commitment to serving on the board and look forward to working with him for many more years.” Ramsey was quick to express his appreciation to okPORK when he heard about receiving the 2017 Ambassador Award. “Anytime we are recognized by our peers in a positive way, we are excited about it and take it seriously,” said Ramsey. “Because we feel like a small player in production agriculture, it’s humbling to be recognized when there are others that operate on a much larger scale.” •

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2017 Outstanding Legislator Representative Terry O’Donnell During our work on SQ777, it became clear to agricultural organizations, including okPORK, we need to provide assurances to citizens of Oklahoma that agriculture is dependent on clean water and we have every intention and expectation the state would continue to regulate water quality. Rep. Terry O’Donnell introduced and carried a bill including that clarification. Agency rules in Oklahoma currently hold that water quality and quantity and the protection of water is clearly in the best interest of Oklahoma. The legislation carried by Rep. O’Donnell sought to provide reassurances to Oklahomans that regardless of the outcome of SQ777, protection of water quality and quantity would continue to be a compelling state interest, or in layman’s terms clearly in the best interest of the state.

okPORK worked with others in the agricultural community to support Rep. O’Donnell’s bill and ultimately the bill was passed by the legislature and signed by Governor Mary Fallin. Without Rep. O’Donnell’s constant support and hard work, this legislation would not have moved through the process and certainly would not have become law. “Rep. O’Donnell is the embodiment of a public servant. There aren’t many legislators who truly put doing right by their constituents over politics, but Rep. O’Donnell is one of them,” said James McSpadden. “While he hasn’t been an overtly outspoken supporter of the pork industry, he has always been there for us. The industry be better served if we had more members like Terry O’Donnell, but the state would be as well.”•

Executive Review, continued from page 4 we have significant changes at the Oklahoma State Capitol. We have a new Speaker of the House in Rep. Charles McCall and a new President Pro-Tempore of the Senate in Sen. Mike Schulz. We also have new chairs of virtually all the committees and that includes Sen. Larry Boggs and Rep. Scooter Park chairing the ag committees and Sen. Eddie Fields and Rep. John Pffeifer chairing the Natural Resources Appropriations sub-committees. Not only do we have new leadership, we have 45 new members of the Oklahoma legislature. That’s right, out of 149 total members, 45 will be new. That means okPORK will be working overtime to introduce our industry to these new members and share our

issues with the new chairmen and leadership teams. A number of years ago, I made the conscious decision to avoid the word problem and instead substitute challenge and opportunities. I find it helps me keep a more positive attitude toward those “opportunities.” As we launch ourselves into 2017, there certainly is no shortage of challenges or opportunities. What I can tell you with absolute certainty is your okPORK team is working tirelessly to make sure all these changes and challenges are true opportunities for us to get better at what we do every day.•

Appetizer Meatballs

Prep: 10 min | Cook: 30 min | Serves 12 2 pounds ground pork, lean 1 cup ice water 1/4 cup soy sauce 1/4 teaspoon blackpepper, freshly ground

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Heat oven to 375 degrees F. With hands or wooden spoon mix pork, water, soy sauce and pepper thoroughly in large bowl. Shape into 3/4 -inch balls (mixture will be fairly soft and balls will not be perfect). Arrange closely together in single layer on ungreased shallow baking pan, like a jelly-roll pan. Bake for 20-30 minutes. Remove from pan, and serve immediately with a dipping sauce, like your favorite salad dressings (Russian, Thousand Island, Ranch). Use toothpicks to skewer meatballs to dip. Or remove from pan, cool, cover and freeze or refrigerate. Serve cold or reheated.

Youth Leadership CONFERENCE


*Scholarship application due with registration

APRIL 7-9, 2017 Oklahoma City, Okla.

Registration deadline*: March 8

For more information and to register visit

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Thank You, Ms. Donna! 20 |

Donna Jackson Retires From okPORK After 18 Years


oday, the average length of time an employee stays at their job is just more than four years. okPORK has received a gift with Donna Jackson’s lengthy tenure. Donna Jackson joined okPORK January 1st, 1999. Roy Lee Lindsey had just been hired as the okPORK Executive Director and he recruited Donna to manage the office. Lindsey had worked with Jackson at the Cleveland County Cooperative Extension Service for two years and knew she would be a good fit for the position at okPORK. Jackson was looking for a new work environment and new challenge, so she agreed to take the risk of changing jobs and move to okPORK. “I came into this job not knowing anything about pig farming and didn’t even eat much pork because we raised cattle and ate a lot of beef. I’ve certainly expanded my menu to include more pork over the past 18 years,” Jackson said. “I’ve been most surprised at how large the industry has become and the number of pigs we produce in our state. I would have never known about that if I didn’t work for okPORK.” After 18 years of commitment to Oklahoma’s emerging pork industry, Donna has decided that it’s time for retirement and will leave okPORK at the end of March 2017. “It was a hard decision for sure and it just came down to needing to set a date and get the ball rolling or I’d never do it,” Jackson said. “I thought I’d outlive Roy Lee here, but it turns out I couldn’t wait that long.” Lindsey said the continuity Jackson has brought to the office is priceless. “Donna knows so much about the people in the industry and how to best manage our operations here at okPORK. It’s been such a blessing,” Lindsey said. “Donna has been especially great in the role as the front door to okPORK, everyone who’s contacted okPORK has talked to Ms. Donna, and they are always excited when they get to meet her in person at our meetings.” Jackson’s role behind the scenes has been equally important. She handles so much of the day-to-day operations that the list would fill this page. Her role at okPORK goes way beyond assignments, spreadsheets and phone calls. “She keeps the rest of us on task, on track. She’s good at keeping up with deadlines and directing the staff to the projects that need attention,” Lindsey said. “She’s also key to helping us turn out materials that are correct and convey our messages effectively to the audiences we need to reach. And in turn these materials reflect positively on who we are. Her background in technical writing and exceptional attention to detail has helped us build and maintain a professional image for okPORK.” And over the past 18 years the office manager role certainly grew as the origination grew and Jackson stepped up to every challenge and was key to driving the organization forward. “My tenure with okPORK has been an adventure. We’ve

grown and added to our program at such a rate that this has never been a boring job,” Jackson said. “I’m proud of how many things okPORK is able to accomplish with the number of employees we have.” And through all the growth, Jackson kept people at the center of her focus. “She and I have a genuine understanding of what I need and when I need it. She’s become a confidant for me and all the employees at okPORK,” Lindsey said. “She can come to me and say ‘we need to look at this differently.’ Employees can approach her with issues and she knows how to help them address issues here in the office and even in their lives. And I think that level of connection is rare.” Donna has impacted many other okPORK employees over the years. “When I walked into the okPORK office in 2003 I knew Donna would be an invaluable resource to me being successful in my job,” said Nikki Snider, okPORK Director of Marketing and Promotions. “And it quickly became apparent that Donna would also fill an important role in my life as a trusted friend and someone I’d excitedly share the thrills and trials of my work and personal life.” “Everyone that has been around Donna at okPORK knows and understands the skills she has brought to the office during her tenure, but it is the things that most people don’t see that I will miss. It’s the random conversations about muscle cars, aviation, soccer, military service, wine, farming and unique places to shop – even a lunch hour that included geocaching around downtown Oklahoma City,” said Lloyd Hawkins, okPORK Community Outreach Specialist. “Donna is also the office sounding board for all issues, whether they are work or personal. She has a way of listening to complaints and knowing whether to give advice or just listen. Her dedication to this office and it’s procedures is the glue that holds everything together.” As she prepares to retire, Jackson’s commitment to the people in the industry is still strong as ever. “The people that I’ve gotten know and work with are my favorite part of the past 18 years,” Jackson said. “I’ll treasure the relationships I’ve developed with the employees and will miss that daily connection.” Jackson says she is looking forward to retirement but knows she will miss coming to work every day for a while. “I’m looking forward to the freedom I’ll have in retirement. I’ve always enjoyed traveling and I’m looking forward to possibly traveling more,” Jackson said. “I’m looking forward to the first bad weather of 2018 when I can stay snug in bed and everyone else is struggling to get to work.” •

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We wish you all the best! Since I moved back to Oklahoma in 2000, I could count on Donna’s greeting when I called okPORK and it always made me smile. That is part of who Donna has always been to us – steady, deliberate, thorough and someone you can count on! She will always be a part of Oklahoma’s pork industry. – Joe Popplewell –

Donna is an exceptional individual that okPORK benefited greatly from her skill, commitment to our industry and her confident, positive attitude. okPORK will miss her greatly both as a friend, co-worker, and a dedicated partner. – Wathina Luthi –

When I first met Donna I had the impression that she had been there forever. Her knowledge of everything that took place quickly puts a person at ease. From my first tour of the office to my last year as president, I will remember Donna as the heart beat of the office. It has been a decade since I had served on the board, and when I call or see her at events and it’s like it has only been a short few weeks. Donna has been the voice and face okPORK for a long time and she will be greatly missed. – Lonnie Holescher –

Donna is very professional and organized. It has been a pleasure to have her as the office manager and she has been a great representative for okPORK. – Phil Oliphant

My first board meeting in 2012, I sat down at the table as the meeting started. During the meeting, I saw Ms. Donna changing tapes in a cassette recorder. I’m thinking this is 2012, who uses tape? So, my first words as a board member were: Keith: What the heck is that Ms. Donna,” Donna calmly replies: I’m taping the meeting for the record.” Keith: You’re using tape? Donna: That’s what tape does? I couldn’t argue that. At the next meeting Roy Lee bought a digital recorder. – Keith Reiner –

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Ms. Donna is one awesome lady! I appreciate EVERYTHING that she has done for OPC. She has been such a solid and faithful friend to the Oklahoma Pork Council and she will be greatly missed by all. My absolute best memory of Ms. Donna is sitting with her at one our meetings She showed me her Hot Air Balloon pilots license and told me stories of her adventures. I loved every minute of it. I wish her well in her retirement and future travels. Ms. Donna, you will be greatly missed and I will especially miss hearing your voice each time I call. – Tina Falcon –

When I was working with okPORK on special projects, Donna graciously set aside whatever project was keeping her busy and help me gather information or send out a mailing. I appreciate how well she always handled her work and also that she was a stabilizing force for the organization over the years. She was a great servant to the organization and a good friend who will be missed. – Rick Maloney –

Save The Date → June 25-30, 2017 → Youth



Don’t miss this great experience! Apply for Youth Leadership Camp. Visit for application and stories from past Youth Leadership Camps.

New Experiences | New Friends | Great Food | One Amazing Week! Experience the Pork Industry from Farm-to-Fork | Network with Pork Industry Professionals | 23

at okPORK okPORK is excited to announce they have filled three positions with team members who have outstanding capabilities to contribute to the swine industry. Nikki Snider, Christine Sanchez and Lindsay Tasos, were officially welcomed to the okPORK team. Snider started working for okPORK again in November 2016 and Sanchez and Tasos joined her this month. “I am excited to have this group of energetic and enthusiastic individuals join our team at okPORK,” said Roy Lee Lindsey, okPORK executive director. “The special talents each brings to okPORK will greatly improve our ability to share the story of Oklahoma’s hog farmers.” Snider (left), okPORK Director of Marketing and Promotions, grew up on a diversified farm near Hydro, Okla. She received her bachelor’s degree in Agricultural Communications and Agribusiness from Oklahoma State University. She is passionate about bridging the gap between farmers and consumers. Snider has many years of experience telling the stories of Oklahoma’s pork producers as she worked onand-off for okPORK since 2003 in the roles of marketing and promotions, communications and as a freelance contractor. As the Director of Marketing and Promotion, Snider places media buys, creates advertising collateral, coordinates the Youth Leadership Camp and manages okPORK’s social media platforms. “Oklahoma’s pork producers work hard every day and make a significant contribution to rural Oklahoma,” said Snider. “I have the enjoyable job of telling their stories and can’t wait to work with them closely again.”

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Sanchez (middle), okPORK’s Office Manager, was born and raised on a small farm in Ottawa, Ohio. Her family moved to Oklahoma in 1982 where she planted her roots. Sanchez is married with five children and has goals for a stronger and stable future for her family. She is pursuing her bachelor’s degree at Mid-America Christian University in Business Administration, Accounting and Ethics. As the Office Manager, Sanchez will be responsible for streamlining all functions in the office. Sanchez will take over for current Office Manager, Donna Jackson, when she retires in late March. “I look forward to learning everything there is to know about okPORK and how they help people succeed in the pork industry,” Sanchez said. “I love learning how to make things more efficient so that we can spend more time on things that matter most, family.” Tasos (right), okPORK Communications Specialist, was raised on a small farm in Madera, Calif., where she grew up showing purebred Hampshire hogs and paint show horses. She recently graduated from Oklahoma State University with a bachelor’s degree in Animal Science and Agricultural Communications. Tasos interned for okPORK during summer 2016. As the Communications Specialist, Tasos writes and designs for okPORK PAGES, communicates with outside media groups, manages blogs and newsletters and coordinates the Youth Leadership Camp. “My dream job has officially become a reality,” Tasos said. “Needless to say, I am humbled and excited to start this new journey in an industry that I am so passionate about.” •

A Courteous Donation


t the okPORK quarterly board meeting on Dec. 9, board members and staff from the Oklahoma Pork Council presented a $10,000 check to the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma to purchase pork sticks for its Food for Kids Backpack Program. This program provides chronically hungry children with backpacks filled with non-perishable, nutritious, shelf-stable food to sustain them over weekends and school holidays. This donation from okPORK will allow the Regional Food Bank to purchase 28,571 pork sticks. Thanks to a matching challenge from, the Cresap Family Foundaiton and Chesapeake Energy Corporation, which matches every gift received from Nov. 15 through Jan. 15 dollar for dollar, this $10,000 donation will have double the impact. “Helping hungry Oklahomans is important to Oklahoma’s pork producers especially during this time of year,” said Roy Lee Lindsey, okPORK Executive Director. “That’s why we gladly give each year to the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma. But the matching funds campaign this year is especially exciting because now the impact of our donation will go even further.” Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma CEO Katie Fitzgerald said the long-term partnership between their organization and okPORK is one that makes a difference in the lives of hungry Oklahomans. “Since the okPORK began partnering with the Regional Food Bank in 1996, they have provided a total of $112,000 in donations,” said Fitzgerald. “That equates to 500,000 meals for families in our state.” •

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HANOR Moves Headquarters to Enid, Okla.


he HANOR Family of Companies announced in 2015 that it would begin transitioning its company headquarters from Wisconsin to Enid, Oklahoma. On November 30th that transition took another step further with the open house of the new headquarters facility. “The open house was a great event and we had about 120 people attend,” said Tom Layne, Human Resource Manager for HANOR. The decision to move the headquarters was based on the success and size of their operations here in Oklahoma and the fact that one of HANOR’s managing partners lives in Enid. Fifty people work for HANOR in Enid and another 300 work on their farms throughout Oklahoma. HANOR has more sows in Oklahoma than any other state. “We are pleased to be able to expand our presence in Enid,” said Mryl Mortenson HANOR

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managing partner. “As we look at the future of our industry, and the significant presence we already have there, it makes sense to move our headquarters to Oklahoma.” The transition from Wisconsin to Oklahoma will continue over the next couple of years Layne said and will eventually bring 35 new jobs into Enid. To accommodate the current, transitioned and new employees, HANOR built a new building at 4103 E. Garriott Street in Enid. “The relocation of the HANOR Headquarters to Enid will give our community another strong corporate partner to support our growing economy,” said Brent Kisling, executive director of the Enid Regional Development Alliance. “Anytime we can announce the addition of new jobs and capital investment in Enid, particularly with a well-respected company such as HANOR, it’s a win for our community.” During the open house HANOR introduced the new facility to the Enid community and okPORK staff was on hand to prepare chop sticks, candied bacon and stuffed peppers for the guests to enjoy. “It was great to see the Enid community come out and support HANOR during the open house,” said Roy Lee Lindsey,” okPORK executive director. “The move of their headquarters to Oklahoma is a continuation of HANOR’s strong commitment to this state and shows that they are committed to many more years of pork production in this state.” •

okPORK has been quite busy during the new year. Here are some of our recent donations for 2017! Department of Ag New Legislators Luncheon

66 Conference Basketball Tournament

Moss High School Dinner Oklahoma Panhandle Educational Support & Research Center Personnel Women in Ag Kingfisher Labor Day of Oklahoma Auction Conference Ground Hog Dinner Ninnekah Calf Fry, Cake Auction Dinner

John Marshall College Family Night

Oklahoma Grow Wagoner Co. Premium by Farmher Sale Moss High School Basketball & Softball Tournament

FAPC Judging Class

Cleveland Co. Livestock Show

Wilson Public School 2017 Prom American Legion Guthrie Chuckwagon Dinner | 27

901 N. Lincoln Blvd., Suite 380 Oklahoma City, OK 73104-3206

Stay Connected : search okpork

Apricot-Mustard Grilled Pork Tenderloin Prep: 5 min | Cook: 15 min | Serves 4 Ingredients 1 pork tenderloin, (about 1 pound) 3 tablespoons apricot preserves 1/4 cup mustard

Cooking Directions Season tenderloin with salt and pepper. Stir together the preserves and mustard in a small bowl. Place pork over a medium-hot fire and grill for about 15 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 145 degrees Fahrenheit, followed by a 3-minute rest time. Brush with mustard mixture in the last few minutes.

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okPORK PAGES Spring 2017  

Official publication of the Oklahoma Pork Council.

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